The Prime Minister’s Press Office is no stranger to a scandal. However, something which disturbingly went undetected was this rather strange statement from the Prime Minister’s Twitter account, insisting he and his Political Cabinet wish to “deliver security at whatever stage of life you find yourself”.
Security? What kind of security is David Cameron implying? What of those 18-21 year olds facing a loss of housing benefit because life is more complex than a choice to “earn or learn”? People with disabilities are being told that they are fit to work, or seeing access to benefits that are integral to their independence removed. On top of that, can a cabinet which is so unrepresentative of Britain really lay claim to securing anyone’s future, regardless of the stage of life they are in?
If ensuring national security is classed as ignoring the number of families living below the poverty line, putting the problem and solution of radicalisation down to the British Muslim community, as well as having the UN investigate human rights abuses regarding Iain Duncan Smith’s reforms, then David Cameron is probably doing it right.
But of course, let’s not forget, Mr. Cameron just announced that this government shall take 20,000 refugees. The problem with this? It is not even an immediate quota; it will be imposed over the next five years. Further to this, it has been discovered that when refugees turn 18 years old, they shall be deported. Let me ask you this: does this seem like a government which is putting the security of a person first, no matter what stage of life they are in? Or does it seem like a government which is committed to something much more insidious- the preservation of the British self?
Refugees are not a threat to British citizens, and nor are immigrants. We finally found out they are human too when the world was moved by a dead child. In light of recent developments surrounding the change of rhetoric concerning this “migrant crisis” we are facing, it begs the question: what is the Prime Minister protecting us from?
First came the idea of the Big Society. Then those great British Values. Now, there’s just security. Mr Cameron loves to throw around terms, without giving us any context. For those of us living in Britain, security means a Conservative government dedicated to keeping pesky problems out of our hair, and shoving them under a carpet. It is clear that there is a focus on the individual in a very exclusive way- the British individual. However, British in itself has taken on a whole new meaning, set by those great British Values all British citizens must have, one of which is obviously only caring about dead children when they are plastered on the front pages of newspapers, because isn’t it so awful that we have to come face-to-face with such tragic tales?
But who truly is this British person we talk of? Muslims aren’t British until they put Muslims second. Immigrants aren’t British until they have a stamp on their passport saying they have lived here long enough. Asylum seekers aren’t people, let alone British, if we are going to look at how they are treated. You might not be allowed to be British if you don’t pass a test – don’t forget that.
Wait a minute- so who will guarantee their security? What if there is nowhere else to call home anymore? What does this mean for the entire concept of security in this country if we can’t guarantee basic human rights?
I guess the Conservative government has different priorities. It’s so committed to our security ‘at any stage in life’, that maybe basic human rights for all are not a concern. The concept of security within the mind of David Cameron centres on the protection of theoretical Britain. This means people who aren’t British don’t count. Say no to anything that doesn’t come with a Union Jack on it! Say no to anything we want to wash our hands of because it is more convenient that way!
This seems to light a path towards a future paved with more exceptions and emergency decisions. It seems that the Prime Minister is a big fan of being moral when he wants to be, and being protective at other times, as though they are mutually exclusive. The Prime Minister can do what he wants. When Parliament calls for no air strikes in Syria, the Prime Minister authorises a drone, because why the hell not? Yet, only when the British public cries for the drowned clutching the morning’s papers does the Prime Minister change his mind about whether we have enough space for 20,000 refugees. If it’s mainstream, it’s okay- why bother with the fringes of society who aren’t very British anyway? This is national security we’re talking about!
Maybe it’s already happening, with the poor, sick, elderly, disabled, and people-fleeing-from-war getting side-lined for political expediency. The state is being shrunk only in that it’s reducing its responsibilities, but the burdens are growing. This is how we treat people who are in a time of need.
I don’t think this is a very secure future for any of us- do you?